You will remember that last season the County held 4 consultation meetings at Faversham, Maidstone, Canterbury and Westcombe Park with players, coaches and administrators on what our key objectives should be for 2019/20.
You will also remember that recruitment and retention of adult men’s fifteen a side players was overwhelmingly identified as the number one target. It is for this reason that we are pleased to say that over £40k of discretionary spend has been earmarked for this purpose as well as another £25k to be spent on planning and investing in facilities, support and guidance to clubs, projects that support player retention, and the quality of welcome provided by our Kent clubs. This latter area will support the recruitment and retention of players through raising the standard of facilities further and also provide some funding for innovative methods of welcoming new members.
It will also be of help to note that over the last 4 years KCRFU have contributed £100k from reserves to it’s clubs through the Small Facilities Grant fund administered by Nigel Fray as the County Facilities Manager. This until the end of last season supported the RFU major facilities grant funding.
To underpin the recruitment and retention theme in this year’s budget and objectives we have included the following within the 2019/20 work programme:
• Competitions review to include a mid- season reassessment of results and failures to honour fixtures- More flexibility in merit table rules around numbers-the Game On principles and front row rules around uncontested scrums.
• Front Row Courses. The first course has already been trialled in Metropolitan Kent to provide a model to roll out to the rest of the County.
• A small grant pot to be created to reward innovative ideas around the club welcome and potential to recruit players and volunteers.
• Sharing of Best Practice relating to transition from Junior to the Senior Men’s XV a side game and the general retention of 18-24 year olds.
• Support for Succession planning in clubs and the County and the continued running of a Kent leadership Academy with an emphasis-without being exclusively so – on 18-24 year olds in the game.
• Support of facilities planning where the emphasis is placed on recruitment and retention of players.
• Continued and enhanced support for training good quality coaches by volunteers and by the RFU CRC’s coaching of coaches to retain players.
• Emphasis on training club referees to support the current structure of the game and to encourage the training of both young coaches and referees.
• Support of clubs through Seminars, Club Forums and potentially webinars to demonstrate how to ‘plug-in ‘ to external grant funding networks.
We look forward to maintaining this two way consultation and would like to keep the dialogue going through our website, facebook pages, club forums, leadership academy and various training courses at county and RFU level.
Please contact the following if you have any points you want to raise on this note or on any other issue: